The Punch

The Arena, San Juan
September 24, 2013
The Punch

I am not laughing.
You probably are. Yes, I see that smirk. Don’t hide it. I know.
You probably saw on national television the sad, unfortunate incident that happened during the waning moments of the non-bearing Season 90 NCAA basketball game between Emilio Aguinaldo College and Mapua last Monday. The shoulder bump by EAC’s John Tayongtong that sent Mapua’s CJ Isit sprawling on the floor. The push by Mapua’s Leo Gabo that left Tayongtong backpedalling. Isit getting up and running straight to Tayongtong. And then the Tayongtong punch on Isit.
Then BOOM. Everthing just materialized by a snap of the finger. Gabo doing the run around and chased by EAC’s Jack Arquero. Mapua rookie Justin Serrano rushing to Tayongtong and was instead met by EAC’s Jan Jamon. The brave, valiant venue bouncer rushing to protect Tayongtong by wrapping his massive, muscled body. Several Mapua players including Andrew Estrella throwing a punch or two to Tayongtong that landed on the bouncer.
It was total chaos.
Or Royal Rumble to you with that smile.
Basket-“brawl” at its ugly glory.
The worst brawl in perhaps two decades since that ill-fated free-for-all between San Beda and former NCAA member Philippine Christian University at the Makati Coliseum 12 years ago and the Letran-Jose Rizal fracas during the 1999 NCAA championship at the Philsports Arena in Pasig City.
It resulted to 18 players, nine each from EAC and Mapua, getting slapped with suspensions from one game to five and referees being fined an undisclosed amount and suspended indefinitely.
Or you can look at Isit’s face and his swollen left eye caused by a fractured skull and his bruised ego.
Or you go straight and ask Isit’s mother how heartbroken she is for travelling straight from Canada only to see her son getting punched at.
Or you can imagine the misery and remorse Tayongtong is probably feeling right now after he uncorked that rocking that devastating right straight instead of restraining himself and just run away.
Or you can check the international sports websites like Bleacher Report and Sports Illustrated that reported this black mark not just in the history of the NCAA but Philippine collegiate basketball in general.
It is utterly senseless.
And I’m still not laughing.

You probably are. Yes, I see that smirk. Don’t hide it. I know.

Follow Sportsmaryosep on Twitter: @JoeySVillar

(Photo courtesy of Noel Tonido of The Benchwarmers)


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